The Exponential Complexity of Man

We can see that there is only one substance in the universe and that man is the most perfect one. He is to the ape and the cleverest animals what Huygens's planetary clock is to one of Julien Leroy's watches. If it took more instruments, more cogs, more springs to show or tell the time, if it took Vaucanson more artistry to make his flautist than his duck, he would have needed even more to make a speaking machine, which can no longer be considered impossible, particularly at the hands of a new Prometheus. Thus, in the same way, nature needed more artistry and machinery to construct and maintain a machine which could continue for a whole century to tell all the beats of the heart and the mind; for we cannot tell the time from the pulse, it is at least the barometer of heat and liveliness, from which we can judge the nature of the soul.


Using automatons made to resemble ducks and the task of building one to resemble man.

Folksonomies: machine mechanics

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Time (0.962777): dbpedia | freebase | opencyc
Metaphysics (0.906108): dbpedia | freebase | opencyc
Universe (0.866814): dbpedia | freebase
Clock (0.774000): dbpedia | freebase | opencyc
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Mind (0.745491): dbpedia | freebase | opencyc
Spirit (0.700255): dbpedia | freebase | opencyc
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 Machine Man and Other Writings
Books, Brochures, and Chapters>Book:  Mettrie , Julien Offray De La and Thomson , Ann (1996-04-18), Machine Man and Other Writings, Cambridge Univ Pr, Retrieved on 2012-06-08
  • Source Material []
  • Folksonomies: philosophy


    17 MAY 2011

     Comparing Ourselves to Other Animals

    Examples of authors referring to animals in nature for insights into human nature.